Since 1986, The River Project has operated a multi-faceted marine field station in what is now the Hudson River Park Estuarine Sanctuary.
The goal has been to help protect and restore the ecosystem of the Hudson River Estuary through scientific research and education programs. In temporary quarters at Pier 40, TRP continues to provide hands-on, get-wet, programs that look at and monitor the progressive ecosystem dynamics of the Harbor, especially in the context of plans for urban marine habitats with wild plants and animals.
The fundamental and unique quality of TRP’s programs is rooted in conducting scientific research in a public setting and connecting the people of New York and visitors from around the world to the marvels and mysteries of New York Harbor and the Hudson River Estuary.
TRP's Board is deep with scientific expertise whose particular strength lies in field studies of the Hudson River ecosystem. These studies have produced a comprehensive database of fish, colonization studies of shoreline invertebrates, surveys of important species such as oysters, and a variety of public demonstrations of fish species diversity, abundance and behavior. This year marks 30 years of its extraordinary and unique activities. The River Project is highly integrated into and engaged with life in our local community, and with educational and environmental partners at the civic, city, state and federal level.
The River Project is an original part of Hudson River Park, the waterfront park under construction on Manhattan's lower west side. We supported development of park plans to include designation of Pier 26 as an environmental center to be landscaped in native coastal plantings; several 'eco-piers' that will be allowed to naturalize to help sustain wading birds and other wildlife; and public docks and boat launches.
In May 2005 the Hudson River Park Trust, our landlord, announced receipt of funds to rebuild the Tribeca section of Hudson River Park, and The River Project has now relocated within the park to offices, storage space, and waterfront field station and lab facilities at Pier 40.
Water quality is quite good now, and the harbor's rich and diverse wildlife is a national treasure. The underwater area off Manhattan's west side waterfront has such high biodiversity and sustains so many important species of fish that it has been designated as a state estuarine sanctuary, a designation that was accomplished based on The River Project's fourteen years of recorded wildlife data.